G.M. Timčák

Geology Dept., FBERG, Technical University,

SK 040 01 KOŠICE, Slovakia






When dealing with ethical issues, one has to consider the culture within which the given ethical principles are to be applied. Thus when speaking about geoethics today in Central Eastern Europe, we have to bear in mind that about 3 generations of engineers were educated in the spirit of “hard ruling over nature”. When in about 1979 Professor Kahuda was demonstrating at a meeting of geologists the possibilities of the use of psychotronics in geological survey, he was not successful - though his methods were non-intrusive and inexpensive - mainly because of the paradigm problem.  The paper discusses the issue of how we can help to facilitate the change of paradigms through subjects of human potential development that could be used in the educational system (an area of primary interest within lifelong education). The change of paradigm in the engineering oriented minds could help realising the need to use principles of geoethics in sustainable earth resource management.





The problem of relationship between humans and Nature is age-old. Whilst the oldest known civilizations seem to have a respect for Nature, the era of science and technology has brought a spirit of desire to imitate, conquer and rule Nature. With the ethical emphasis having been shifted from spiritual to commercial values, humans have given rise to a technosphere that at present develops at the expense of the biosphere and sociosphere (s.s.).  The value system of the present population tends to be dominated by strongly utilitarian values and regretfully no significant stratum of the modern society had been successful in resisting the consumerism or offering a generally acceptable and motivating alternative (cf. Michaelis, Hervey 1973).



Humans and the environment


F. Capra in his book “Turning point” (1988) describes the phase shift between a culture/civilisation that is around its peak of performance and the new culture that springs forth as a reaction to the problems of the old civilisation. Indeed we see a birth of a number of cultures and subcultures that aim at restoring balance between human needs and the needs of Nature. It is difficult to predict which new subculture(s) or philosophical trend(s) will be accepted for building the governing paradigm of the third Millennium, but it seems that it will incorporate the concept of “weak interactions”, i.e. the notion that of our mental processes influence the physical body and the environment (sensu lato). From this it would follow that people (and specially engineers) need to have more training in mind management that is a part of the Human Potential Development system (Timčák 1995).

The present time is abundant in messages coming from more ancient cultures (Australian aborigines, Kogi Indians, other S. and N. Amerindians, Tibetans, Asian Indians, etc.) that hint at the urgency of change in the value system and paradigm. Some of these cultures (the Kogi) even managed to resist up to the present day the effects of our civilisation on their life and to maintain a sustainable life.


Not too long ago, scientific research has brought up the fact that humans need value systems; that apart from IQ humans need emotional intelligence (EQ) and the more recently defined spiritual intelligence (SQ). The latter two can be developed by training (Goleman 1998, Zohar, Marshall 2000). Thus apart from satisfying the basic Maslowian needs, people need to discover spiritual, emotional and social/relational values cum comfort. The increasing stress levels of modern life on the other hand (though some scientists suggest that stress may speed up the evolution) resulted in a rediscovery of relaxation and meditation techniques for the modern man (Berg, Mulder 1976, Thomas 1973, Popper 1990).   More so, as it was confirmed also by Single proton emission computed tomography research that these techniques have a profound effect also on the recuperation processes of the body and mind (Newberg, Aquili 2001).


When in the seventies Professor Kahuda (at a time the minister of Education in the post-war Czechoslovakia) - on the basis of his experimental research - started realising and cautiously publishing the observation that humans have a very sensitive “extended sensory system” that enables trained people to detect “hidden” (i.e. directly not accessible) geological and other physical phenomena, he was not taken too seriously. When he demonstrated the possibilities of human remote sensing (HRS) on concrete geological examples (land or air based HRS detection of forgotten drives, holes and rock un-homogeneities in open pit mines) to a geological audience, even the prospect of huge cost savings for geological survey works failed to evoke sufficient interest to apply this knowledge to dealing with geological and mining problems on a routine basis. It all seemed to be “too subjective” to be fit for a “hard” technology like mining, though historically we see that this is not a new idea -Agricola e.g. in the 2nd book of his De Re Metallica Libri XII (1556) devoted quite some attention to techniques like dowsing and the old mining operations based on such survey methods were quite successful.


If we interpret Kahuda´s HRS results as a consequence of humans having access to large data fields of which usually they are able to have conscious access only to a part. Thus the information that our brain subconsciously receives and reacts to, is a possible promise for a more holistic understanding of life and earth resources management. The discovery and use of our own “hidden” potentials - instead of fully relying on technological devices in analysing, evaluating and assessing the world around us - should be a part of the new paradigm.


The access to these “hidden” potentials is sometimes termed as intuition. It is thus a human faculty or sense that is at present only vaguely defined, but in science, technology and commerce it is know to be a key factor for decision-making under fuzzy conditions (the most frequent case in life), for discoveries, in seeking creative solutions, creating new things or the development of EQ and SQ.



A person, who has discovered his/her ability to discriminate intuitive mental impulses from other ones is more successful and has also a possibility to have a more sensitive/considerate approach to life situations.


How to train intuition? How to train one’s inner sensitivity without the loss of stress tolerance? Presently, the subjects of Human Potential Development (HPD) taught e.g. since 1991 at our university (but also at other European Higher Education Institutions) and since 1996 at the Institute of Lifelong Education of the same university seem to offer a balanced approach to mastering the information from our deeper parts of mind and through them also of information coming from the widest environment (cf. Timčák 1993).


The training of these subjects supported by neurotechnological devices (Valuch 1996) enable a more time efficient mind management. Mind management is a set of techniques that enable more efficient thinking, enhanced creativity, development of EQ and a greater efficiency in auto-ecology. This means a better work performance without the loss of ethical dimensions, loss of balance between work, education and recreation  or loss of the perception of (and participation on the) richness of life. Thus the HPD program offers a way to a better life quality in its true sense. Only people that are trained also in these areas of human performance are usually able also to see and feel better the needs of the environment and indeed the whole biosphere (s.l.). These people tend to develop their humane values (i.e. also their personality) more consciously than untrained individuals.


Humans need experience to be motivated. The HPD training supported by neurotechnological devices offer a relatively speedy way to experiences that help to understand ourselves, our abilities and potentials; the consequences of our intentions, decisions and acts as individuals, as a team members or members of the human society. The HPD training experiences can be very intensive and has a positive influence (influencing also our geoethical action/reaction framework).





If we accept the thesis that a sustainable management of earth resources is possible, surely we will be less prone to think that the solution to earth resource management problems is to develop say cosmic technology and after the Earth will become uninhabitable to shift - like cosmic Noahs - to other heavenly bodies and start the old story anew.  Thus we would have to consider ways, how to develop a modern working model of sustainable earth resource management  (containing also principles of geoethics).


In order to arrive at a generally accepted model of sustainable earth resources management however, many factors have to come together synergically: some marked changes in the environment that will mobilise people to desire a change of economic development paradigm, availability of a suitable economical and technological models of such development, a high number of people well trained in HPD and a general atmosphere of human understanding.  Out of these the one that can be affected primarily by educational systems is making the HPD training accessible to all those interested.





Agricola G. 1556: De re metallica libri XII, Basileum

Berg W.P., Mulder B. 1976: Psychological research on the effects of the Transcendental meditation on a number of personality variables, Gedrag: Tidschrift voor Psychologie 4, pp. 20-218

Capra F. 1988: The Turning point, Bantam Doubleday

Goleman D. 1998: Working with emotional intelligence, Bloomsbury

Newberg A., Aquili E.G. 2001: Why God won´t go away, Ballantine Books

Michaelis A.R., Harvey H. 1973: Scientists in search of their conscience, Springer V., Berlin

Popper P. 1990: Kniha vnútorných ciest (A belső utak könyve), Saxum, Budapest

Reddy D. 1994: Can God improve my balance sheet? Rupa and Co., Calcutta

Thomas K. 1973: Meditation in Forschung und Erfahrung, in weltweiter Beobachtung und praktischer Anleitung, Steinkopf V., G. Thieme Verlag, Stuttgart

Timčák G.M. 1995: Auto-ecology and the Human Potential Development project. Course materials, Summer School in Ecology and Environmental Training, TU Košice, pp. 19-25

Timčák G.M. 1998: Notes on the concepts of personal excellence, Proc. Internat. Workshops of the TEMPUS DECENT project, pp. 73-77

Timčák G.M., Jablonská J. 2001: Soft skills, Leonardo “MATCUM” module, VŠB Ostrava

Timčák G.M. 2001: In: Kol.: Manažérske zručnosti a rozvoj ľudských zdrojov, ICV TU, PROQUA, Košice, 155pp

Valuch J.M.1996: Neurotechnologie, Gradior, Praha

Zohar D., Marshall I. 2000: SQ – spirituálna inteligencia (SQ Spirituális inteligencia), Szilencium, Budapest